Over the years, I’ve had the opportunity to be part of worship experiences in multiple churches and ministries. Big churches. Small churches. Living Rooms. Huge auditoriums. Lots of different situations. And, I’ve gotten to serve in a variety of roles – playing guitar, leading worship, speaking, directing video, running camera. I’ve even run sound a few times in a pinch. In all these different places I’ve gotten to see how things work behind the scenes. And frankly, it’s not always great.
At the first church where I ever served in the Arts, the band and the tech team never saw each other face to face. The tech team arrived well before the band, set up, and then headed to Front of House to do their jobs. The band arrived later, set up gear, rehearsed, played the service and then left. The two teams never talked to each other except through microphones. I still have no idea where the tech team went or what they did between rehearsal and the service. I can only remember what one of them even looked like. And I have no idea why things worked this way. It was just the way it was done there. So strange.
At Watermark, we’ve taken a different approach. From the time we were meeting in a high school auditorium we’ve had a One Team concept. You may play guitar, or run lights. You might be doing the announcements or running monitors. It really doesn’t matter. If you are one of the people helping to make our services happen, you have a place in the green room with everyone else. Here’s what that concept has done for us.
No Prima Donnas and No Chips on Shoulders
When you walk into the green room at Watermark between services, it’s hard to know who does what. Everyone is hanging out together regardless of their role on the team. We eat together, joke, pray and talk about what’s going on in our lives. When that sort of thing is happening, it’s difficult to keep that chip on your shoulder. When you know someone else and you know what’s going on in his life, its more difficult to be demanding and condescending. He’s your friend. So you treat him like a friend. It’s great.
No Us vs Them Mentatlity
We’re all One Team, so there is no Them. It’s just us.. So, when something goes wrong, we all work together to fix it. The responsibility may land more squarely in the tech area or the band area but either way, because we’re all one team, we’re committed to making things work. We figure out the problem and move on.
Let’s face it. Doing multiple services on a Sunday or over a weekend isn’t easy. It’s taxing. And when you aren’t getting along with the people you’re serving with it’s even worse. But when you actually get along and hang out together, it’s different. It becomes a source of joy in your life and not something you’re slogging your way through so you can “serve” the church. When people enjoying serving, they continue serving.
In closing, to be perfectly honest, I’ve struggled with writing this post. I don’t want to seem like we have this thing figured out better than anyone else. I know that’s not the case. However, I do know that I really enjoy serving with the team here – more than any place I’ve been. And I do think that this One Team concept is a big part of it. I’d also really enjoy hearing from other people about positive experiences they’ve had serving in churches. What made the difference? How did you accomplish it? Leave a comment below.